I know I talk a ton about woodsy, florally scents, but I should tell you that I, by no means, discriminate against some flavorful, sweet scents. One of my go-to, most-used ingredients – for both flavor and scent – is vanilla. I know, I know. It sounds too simple to be true, but really, vanilla is ahhhh-mazing. We have included in May’s Out of the Woods Apothecary Box our very own Organic Vanilla Bean Extract. Though most people know to bake with vanilla extract, most people don’t know what it is they’re putting into their sweet creations.
Vanilla extract starts with some vanilla beans – little brown sacks filled with tiny specks of deliciousness. The vanilla beans are then soaked in a mixture of alcohol and water in order to create the extract most people recognize. You can cook and bake with either the beans or the extract, but whichever you decide, make sure you splurge and go for the good stuff. Avoid using imitation extracts, and always pick beans that are more fragrant and full.
In addition to being super useful in the kitchen, vanilla includes some essential elements like calcium and potassium. It can be used to treat minor scrapes and burns. Vanilla is not only highly flavorful and healthy, but it also emanates an amazing fragrance. (No, really. Looking to sell your house? The experts say to leave your home vanilla-scented. It’s the number 1 home seller!) When your hubby goes and cooks his bacon in the microwave again, leaving behind that smell that some find delicious while others find repulsive (like me!), try to follow behind him to run a few drops of vanilla through a quick microwave cycle in order to get that smell out. You can also drop a little onto a cotton ball to keep your refrigerator fresh. There are so many ways to brighten your foods and your homes with the engaging scent of vanilla, so grab some of Mayernik Kitchen organic vanilla extract, and bring our home to yours!